Ep53 Liquid, Solid, Gas: Overcoming Today’s Go-Sell-Value Challenge
Welcome to the Inside: Sales Enablement Podcast Episode 53
Nine 4×2 Lego blocks have over 9 Billion unique combinations. How many “legos” does your product, solution, or service have? No matter how you define a “lego” at your company, the permutations are astounding, and yet this is the challenge salespeople navigate daily.
On top of this, your company is changing — rapidly. Moving from one form or the other. This journey represents another challenge salespeople must navigate.
In this podcast, Brian and Scott are joined by Chad Quinn, the CEO & Co-Founder, Ecosystems and Jason Cunliffe, Group VP Content Marketing Services at IDC. Chad and Jason have created a partnership. How did it form? By a shared client’s definition of value and the blending of capabilities to help sellers navigate a complex buyer-seller relationship.
In this podcast, you’ll hear:
- The definition of value
- Ways company’s evolve their value communication approach
- Ideas to make value clear
- Ways to relieve seller burden in the sales process
Welcome to the inside sales enablement podcast. Where has the profession been? Where is it now? And where is it heading? What does it mean to you, your company, other functions? The market? Find out here. Join the founding father of the sales enablement profession Scott Santucci and Trailblazer Brian Lambert, as they take you behind the scenes of the birth of an industry, the inside sales enablement podcast starts now.
Scott Santucci 00:34
I’m Scott Santucci,
Brian Lambert 00:36
Brian Lambert and we are the sales enablement insiders. Our podcast is for sales enablement leaders looking to elevate their function, expand their sphere of influence, and increase the span of control within their companies.
Scott Santucci 00:48
Together, Brian, I’ve worked on over 100 different kinds of sales enablement initiatives, as analysts, consultants or practitioners. We’ve learned the hard way. What works and maybe what’s more Important, what doesn’t.
Brian Lambert 01:02
Our focus is on you as a sales enablement leader and orchestrator. As an orchestrator, you need to develop specific characteristics to operate in the blended domain of strategy and tactics where you do both together well to help your company win. Our goal on the podcast to help you clarify the measures of success, gave you confidence to engage up and down and across the organization, and provide real examples of what it looks like to execute strategy and execute tech. As always, we start with a centering story. So I’m gonna pass it over to Scott Scott, what do you have for us?
Scott Santucci 01:36
So today’s centering story is about a glass of water.
Unknown Speaker 01:43
There we go.
Brian Lambert 01:44
So well, that’s gonna be hard to date.
Scott Santucci 01:47
No day Exactly. Well, it’s timeless, right? So water is a is timeless with with regards to humanity’s concerned. But when you think about water, it’s its chemical composition is it’s a bunch of molecules. those molecules are bouncing around. And what’s interesting about water isn’t the only substance on earth that exists in three different states. It’s a, it exists in a gaseous state, so we breathe it in all the time. It exists in the liquid state. So Jason has a bottle of it right now. So it can deal with the heat down in Miami. And it also exists in a solid state. And that’s really what we’re going to zoom into is, is that the difference between the liquid state and the solid state? So did you know Brian, that ice actually is considered a mineral?
Brian Lambert 02:40
I did not know that. I might have known that, but I probably forgot it.
Scott Santucci 02:44
And so what’s interesting about that is at at at 32 degrees Fahrenheit, zero degrees for our international listeners, something amazing happens is those molecules START STOP bouncing around so fast. They go really, really slow, and literally stop or freeze. And when they freeze, a lot of things happen. So one thing that happens is that the volume of this what was a liquid that now is now a solid is 9% larger. So if you’ve, if you’ve ever frozen a glass of water in your in your freezer, why does the glass break? It’s because it’s bigger. The other thing that’s interesting about that is that in an in a solid state or a mineral state, it’s less dense, so it floats on top of water. So there’s a lot of interesting things about it. And what’s even more interesting about that is when you just add something as simple as salt to the equation at a certain, you know, at a certain ratio. We’re not really here to do a chemistry experiment, but that freezing point can drip down to negative six degrees Fahrenheit, and I didn’t do the calculation for our international community. Sorry, I’m American. I know No matter,
Brian Lambert 04:00
the only international sometimes
Scott Santucci 04:02
Yeah, exactly. So somebody can go calculate it and post that out. But that’s a 38 degree difference between a freezing point by just adding salt, salt to the equation. So those are some interesting facts about water. The last point that I want to make before I get the dreaded question from you hear, Brian, is that what’s also interesting is, when you think about the people who study scientists who study water in its liquid form, they’re very different than the people who study water in its frozen form. So think about glaciers. glaciers are just ice, they’re studied by geologists. They’re not studied by any other people. So and also the, when water gets transformed to water vapor, it’s studied by meteorologists. So there’s a whole bunch of different dynamics going on here with this simple liquid that we take for granted. I don’t
Brian Lambert 04:58
know if you know this, Scott. But I think he said The word interesting seven times. And I’d have to ask our listeners, how many were interested that much in water ice. And I do have to ask you, though, because I’m really curious about this. So what?
Unknown Speaker 05:13
Brian Lambert 05:15
So what is this?
Scott Santucci 05:17
What does this have to do with anything? Right? Yeah. Well, I, I love this quote from Mark Twain. It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure. That just ain’t so. And what we’re talking about here is that, let’s really think about the difference. So as us as human beings, literally outside it’s one degree if we’re in London, or it’s to me in DC, it’s 33 degrees. Can we really tell the difference between one degree and zero degrees? Or one degree or 3033 degrees and 32 degrees? Can you tell that difference? None have us can observe that difference or tell that difference. We can’t feel it. But it has a major transformative effect of going of converting ice from a liquid to a frickin mineral. Think about that.
So the reason that that that’s, that’s so important for our theme here today is that in the state of change as we’re in this digital world, where we’re we have all these different social capabilities, we’ve got digital capabilities, we’ve got new ways of rearranging content. We’ve got different ways to combine different different capabilities and an entirely new things like look at Uber, for example. They don’t own a single cab, but yet they’re the biggest transportation fleet on the planet. What’s going on here? So the reason that I think water is a great metaphor to talk about our theme here, which is what what makes something valuable in a rapidly changing in a rapidly changing environment. That we do have something to base against, which is water. It’s something that all of us take for granted. But it’s the only substance that exists in three different states that that, that we all can relate to.
Brian Lambert 07:12
I love it makes sense. And, you know, we’re in a very transformative state. And some of us are boiling and some of us might be frozen and locked up. And we need to transition states. I love that analogy.
Scott Santucci 07:24
And the reason that we’re bringing that and the reason I’m excited for our special guests here today, is that sometimes going back to that quote, it ain’t what we don’t know. That gets you into trouble. AKA be curious. It’s what we know for sure that just ain’t so. It’s not freezing out. It’s just cold. Well, the ice around you will tell you differently. So I’m really excited to introduce Jason and Chad to join our show, and they’ll introduce themselves a little bit here. Jason works with With ITC, and he’s, he’s responsible for their sales enablement and content and contact practice. And Chad is the CEO of ecosystems. And these two people have mixed their water and salt together or they’re, you know, in our prep, we were calling a chocolate and peanut butter. They’ve got some new ingredients together. So I’ve known Jason for quite a bit bit of time, he was very helpful in helping us launch the sales enablement society. So Jason, welcome to the show. Would you like to introduce yourself a little bit to our audience?
Unknown Speaker 08:36
Scott, thanks very much. Yeah, it’s name is Jason Cunliffe group VP of our content marketing services team at IDC responsibility for sales enablement practice as well. And, you know, I am a also a former bag carrying quota carrying sales representative prior to my career at IDC and One of my, you know, personal objectives that I’m constantly trying to solve for is being that icebreaker if you will, between attended, right between the marketing and the sales function, right is it sometimes you know where we’re stuck in the ice up in the frozen tundra in the Bay of Fundy if you will. And we need to we need to see movement between these two functions. So happy to be on the on the show today and have a good conversation.
Scott Santucci 09:36
Excellent. And Also joining us is is Chad. So I mentioned Chad, Chad. I know I’ve known Chad mostly by following what he what he posts. Chad’s been way out on the vanguard way, way, way, way out on the vanguard about advocating outcome selling and if you’ve been following on our on our podcast, Episode 51, we had a deep dive into it. Come sound with Bob Apollo. Well, Chad’s been advocating this kind of approach for just eons of value and value selling approach. So Chad, welcome to the show. Tell us a little bit more about yourself and your company and what you’re doing.
Unknown Speaker 10:13
Thank you, Scott. Great to be here. great pleasure. Also, thank you, Brian. And great to have some time with Jason Chad Quinn, CEO of ecosystems, really, our passion and purpose and ecosystems is to make value clear. And we have a sales excellence platform that does that. To kind of riff a little bit off of Scott’s centering story, if you think of that glass of water, and you think about value value is always subjective. It’s always in the context or relative to the situation you’re in. So having gold you would say arguably, a gold bar has a lot of intrinsic and extrinsic value. But if you’re in the desert, a glass of water is much more valuable. And so that’s the fun excitement we can have in our discussion is the relativity and the subjectivity around values. And how to best convey to our customers.
Scott Santucci 11:03
I was so hoping you were gonna go there. The reason I picked a glass of water is because of that exact analogy about intrinsic versus objective value. And you you will work perfectly. Oh, that’s fantastic. I’m so excited. This is unrehearsed by the way. So this is how great our our guests are. So what we’re what we’re doing is what I’m really fascinated with is in the state of change, as our listeners have. We’ve done more post COVID research than anybody we’ve published. Over 20 different podcasts of accessible content. We’ve had four keynote quality deep deep dive webinars, we’ve got another one coming up. And what we’re seeing is a lot a lot of change around and what’s what sparked me was there was this announcement maybe a month ago, where ecosystems and IDC announced a partnership and I want to unpack that but What I want to first start off with is, let’s get to know our our guests a little bit and figure out the origin story of how the heck these two ingredients got got together. And let’s figure figure out how we mix the mix the water together, so to speak. So Chad, you’ve been on the soapbox for a long, long time, as I alluded to earlier about selling to value. What trends are you seeing that that are happening that b2b companies are missing?
Unknown Speaker 12:30
I think Scott, let’s do it as a visual for our listeners. So let’s visualize together that there’s a door between you and your customer. And that door represents access into how they see value. Today, regrettably, I think sellers are looking through the keyhole. And that’s the challenge. They’re looking through the keyhole of that door, and only within this very small sliver of what I would call functional value. And we want to work with them to open that door with the customer and look at all the dimensions of value, so that they’re not having this very narrow lens into what that word means.
Scott Santucci 13:11
Awesome. That’s great. It’s very illuminating. So Jason, can you comment on on that? What are you from an IDC perspective? What are you seeing in terms of gaps in value? And what kind of research are you illuminating to highlight that gap? How do we make it better to where b2b companies can get customers to open that door?
Unknown Speaker 13:34
Right. So certainly the buying landscape has changed dramatically, right? In the past few months, companies reinventing themselves in the context of the next normal. Many, in many cases face an existential threat to survival. And I see this every day in calls in terms of, you know, the sales and marketing function, the leaders are still wrapping their heads around On what normal is supposed to look like today, right. And of course, the the selling communities is boxed into the virtual world and have an entirely new value script and buyer landscape that they’re dealing with. And, you know, I think these are themes that we’ve, I’ve been working on personally, but I think, you know, recent events, economic crises, and so forth, it’s just really put all of this under the microscope and force factoring it to, you know, to be solved for in a more meaningful, full way. So we, you know, at IDC, we’ve put out some research as well on the five stages to recovery. We’ve worked with Chad on that as well, in terms of helping our own customers figure out how to flatten their own curve, and move you know, through from, you know, cost optimization, the business resiliency to targeted investments through to you know, what the future and future enterprise is supposed to look like. So we’ve got we’ve got a lot of talk, a lot of times to want to talk about today in terms of business value and the research that IDC produces to help solve for those challenges
Scott Santucci 15:08
on it. So in other words, the the overall economic climate is not unlike changing the temperature around a glass of water. All right, we were accustomed to one, maybe a lukewarm environment or the maybe the molecules were moving around, not as fast as the molecules when it’s super, super hot. And, you know, now things are freezing, or maybe they’re freezing, maybe they’re heating up. But whatever the case is the the current state or status quo, our current glass of water, it’s going to change and it’s going to change into something out and that’s, that’s what both of you guys are observing. Is that fair?
Unknown Speaker 15:51
Yeah. Yeah, I would say that the cost of doing nothing is really high.
Scott Santucci 15:57
Right, right. And so that’s been one Have those points? Well, you know, to quote rush if you choose not to decide you still have made a choice, right? Right. status quo is probably the worst thing that you can do. Awesome. So let’s go into, you know, the next thing. So, okay. That was an interesting conversation about value and concepts of value. I’m still trying to figure out, Okay, we’ve got ecosystems has a software platform to help people do that. And IDC have always known. Aren’t you guys that the people that write reports on stuff? So Jason, you’re in the content business, right? So how would people go about using IDC content to help with sales? Isn’t that for analyst relations people or marketing people? I don’t, I don’t get it. I’m just trying to be like, you know, put some red meat on the table to get us thought acting good acting, Scott.
Unknown Speaker 16:53
Thank you. That’s Yeah, that’s
Scott Santucci 16:56
it. Thank you. I was gonna go there.
Unknown Speaker 16:58
So So we’ve You know, we’ve known for a long time that in the in the content marketing world that that, you know, salespeople will use pretty much any piece of content at their disposal to carry a conversation forward. Right. And some of that content is limited in its value to do that, and some of it is extremely valuable. And over the years, we’ve found that, of course, our ROI and business value practice that produces a lot of this custom content fits that that latter bill, right, which is, which is business value studies, ROI studies, but these are things that have traditionally been used or what we would call marketing purposes. Right. And, you know, over time, we you know, through discussions with our customers and speaking with sales leaders within those organizations, you know, we really keyed in on the fact that you know, the all of these engagement activities that that the market function typically tees up, it really has to be aligned and put forth in a way that the sales function can carry forward not only in an intelligent manner, but in a measurable way. Right. And so solving for that dynamic sort of been the key to solving for that dynamic has really been a key focus of mine for for many years now because to me that unlocks the whole value of the marketing function where you can tie that back to the impact it’s having on sales pipeline, so forth.
Scott Santucci 18:35
Got it. So my reaction to that and I’m putting words in your mouth, please feel free to spit out what doesn’t fit in but my my reaction to that is okay, having myself been in a research business. Well we want to do is we want to figure out what do our customers the end customers care about? And want one thing that I think we can all agree on is a lot of the times the things that Customers care about is so different from the agenda of the b2b sales and marketing company, that there’s a big rift there. So we can do as much research as we want about what customers care about. If the b2b sales and marketing group aren’t even aware that that’s what’s valuable, that’s what’s on their mind. They’re not going to be able to appreciate that content. Is that is that fair?
Unknown Speaker 19:23
Absolutely. And I mean, I think this is this is the perfect, you know, set up to the discussion around why ITC and ecosystems has partnered,
Scott Santucci 19:32
right. Yeah. And so is to address that. And so, Chad, you’ve been working on this on this platform for quite some time to advocate and helping helping businesses set up value, value engineering, value groups, that have had a lot of a lot of great success. But I think you’re probably running into a lot of those same kinds of problems of the perception of value is what our products are not so much that perception of value is what these adult wallet owners care about. Would you care to comment on that? And how does the IBC content of working backwards from what customers care about? How would you put that together in a way that people, salespeople, or marketers can connect the dots and make that value come to life? Or as you say, Make that value clear?
Unknown Speaker 20:21
Yeah, well, let’s take that Scott, let’s take that whole concept of designing from the buyer out kind of an outside in approach versus an inside out. So if we designed from the buyer experience, if we feel in a modern environment that the buyer and their experience and how effortless that is, will be a key determinant to our sales success. Then we’ve got to really challenge some notions here of Do you think I would ask every listener in the recent buying experience to just put yourself through that and how you went about educating yourself and get Getting informed and looking at your options, and then ultimately making a selection and feeling good about that selection and implementing it. Probably, as you think about that experience, nowhere in that time did you ever consider yourself, oh, I’m in the marketing phase. I’m a lead. Right, right. Or I nobody thought of themselves as Oh, I’m transitioning from a lead to a prospect and I’m Tom.
Unknown Speaker 21:28
I’m qualified. ringing the bell
Unknown Speaker 21:31
officially raised my hand.
Unknown Speaker 21:32
Yeah, right. Right. Right. Right. I’ve got budget and authority. So the and I think what that means for us is, and, you know, I could riff and go back to 1887 and john H. Patterson, the CEO of NCR, who was the foundation of sales and the sales function, and back then national cash register. He put together what they called the primer, and the primer was the first sales script that was ever produced. Yep. And that sales script was in four parts your approach, lead to the merchant and tell them that you can help them with profits, then go to your proposition. Why does this cash register mean that you’re going to eliminate theft and have more accurate receipts? Then go to a demo? Show them the cash register, and then close them. Now, that approach proposition demo and close 133 years later, how much has really changed?
Scott Santucci 22:35
Not Oh, I love that you bring that up. I want us to sort of imagine that. So that’s happening. You’re literally in Chicago. And you’re a salesperson, and your territory. The territory literally is the Montana territory. Literally, it’s the territory it’s not the state. And also Who are you selling to you’re literally selling to the angle Family, the Little House in the prairie are selling at the general store people think about how far away that economy is versus the economy that we’re in today. So I think that’s such a great point that you bring up Chad. So yeah, how do these things come together then? So how do you make the how do we help the Laura angles? Laura angles, Dad, I forget what his name was. How do you sell to him and say you need a cash register when that whole mechanical thing has to be so foreign? to where we are today, where the information is about things is so prevalent? It’s almost too noisy and people want so much less information. How do we rationalize those two together and how do we make that come to life?
Unknown Speaker 23:52
Right. Well, we got to tell Charles Engels that
Scott Santucci 23:54
berdahl Thank you for that.
Unknown Speaker 23:56
Yeah, right. We’ve got to tell him that things have changed and that this obsession on product centric value, somehow, sales has been ensconced in this comfortable way of selling. Mm hmm. And guess what value has moved on. value has evolved, and the sales function needs to evolve with it. value now lives in experiences, not products. And so that’s why the gaps wide thing, because we need to pivot to an experience and a buyer experience and back to the good question about IBC plus ecosystems are buyers going to go self educate online, and perhaps get a white paper around a theme that they’re interested in from IDC and as they progressively get more interested in that theme, and start to educate some stakeholders internally, they’re going to want to move forward and have that be effortless. And so if they start to engage your provider, that provider needs To show up with all of the intelligence that they’ve educated and have a collaborative value conversation with them in which they can capture and memorialize value. And so the IDC eco relationship is basically trying to create that effortless tie between a buyer educating upfront through some marketing assets, and the elegance of that conversation and as it evolves into that buyer not having to re explain their problem statement, that buyer not having to talk about what are the outcomes I’ve already discussed digitally somewhere else. It’s basically allowing this experience for them to be effortless between the two functions, so that the content from IDC and all that research and all that market awareness, and the inevitable value conversations of why now why this provider can come together in one integrated platform and billing Simple eyes simple approach to take forward.
Scott Santucci 26:03
So there’s a couple words that you said that really resonate with me. My personal experience is that for folks who are removed from the, you know, the up being on the other side of the desk, or the other side of the zoom now today don’t really appreciate so much. And one of them is, you said, memorialized value. What does that mean, Chad?
Unknown Speaker 26:29
Yeah, yeah, let’s break it down. So basically what it says is that, think about, I’m going to use an example say all of us go out to lunch, and Brian, Chad, Jason Scott, we all put in our orders. And we’ll say we’re healthy. So we’re all going to get the cod salads. And then a couple, maybe 1520 minutes later, the orders come back and we’ve got pizza and spaghetti In a whole different set of orders, we would never tolerate that as a an acceptable experience. And yet every day that happens in business to business sales, were now to draw out the analogy. Think of the order taking as the outcome promises that we are having with our prospects. And when they’re not memorialized, when they’re not captured, when they’re not in a place that we can understand those and convey them or hand them off to customer success. Then we come back in thinking now the order being delivered, and and we’re having to re ask our customer, what did you actually want again, I’m sorry, I didn’t know we didn’t put it down on our scratchpad. That’s what we mean by memorializing having a way that as you’re evolving in your conversations with a prospect and then turning into a customer, that that thread that golden thread stays with them from the whole pre sales outcome promise To the whole post sales outcome delivery,
Unknown Speaker 28:03
right, you know, Scott using the the Charles analogy
Unknown Speaker 28:08
what what I think of it as putting it into radically simple terms, right? is one of the the practice areas that we that we’ve had at IDC is talking to Charles and saying, you know, Charles is going to ask the question, how is this going to help me sell more
Unknown Speaker 28:29
Scott Santucci 28:30
right? How? My God, the idea of selling Cobb salads in the wild west 88 is cracking me up, right?
Unknown Speaker 28:40
How am I going to save money? Yep. And how am I going to give my customers a better experience? Right. And, and so our response to that at IDC is, well, we went out and interviewed 10 folks,
Unknown Speaker 28:54
just like you,
Unknown Speaker 28:55
right, that that and we did you know, a series of Case studies, if you will, in simple terms, and we put it all together, and we wrote it up into this nice
Nick Merinkers 29:06
Unknown Speaker 29:07
right, that validates all this and you fit into this profile, you have the same sort of buying profiles, all these other customers did. And, you know, we were hired to go out and do that and lend some credibility to that store. Right. But, you know, and so that’s the, you know, that’s sort of like the contribution, the research contribution that IDC offers to, you know, to that activity. But then taking that and then moving out of the, you know, 19th century and into the 21st century is, is how do you put that into today’s technology world, and do that at scale? Right, in a b2b environment?
Scott Santucci 29:48
Yes. So that’s, that’s really what JC is just a reaction and then, you know, connect some dots more, to react to that. I’m going to lead with a quote so Henry Ford said a lot of people so want to just ask your customers what they want. Henry Ford said if I asked my customers what they want, they’d say faster horses. And part of what what I doubt is Charles Engels isn’t isn’t waking up at night counting the counting machines are all all all of the miners come in to try to buy dungarees from them and imagining a cash register. So how do we connect the dots because he’s not going to have the vocabulary that NCR would want him to have? his vocabulary is going to be completely different and he doesn’t even know that he needs a cash register in the first place. Then on top of that, when the first time he sees it, isn’t he going to be intimidated by that thing and how the heck am I going to work that is the is the pain is the juice really worth the squeeze? Aren’t those part of the experience? And how does how does the research that you do Jason, and the platforms that you provide? Chad? How do we combine all of those to where we’re delivering a value added experience to customers,
Unknown Speaker 31:17
right? And that’s the third leg of the stool, right, which was was the next angle to this is, you know, we talk about sales enablement at IDC, around agility, customer experience. And the third one is innovation. Right? So that’s, that’s, that’s the perfect setup for you need to think about new revenue sources, you need to think about new business models and so forth. Right. And and in that sort of the extra extra mile that that that that our research brings to the table is how’s this type of solution. This type of experience is going to help you innovate and think about new concepts and new business models. Chat. I’ll turn it over to you to take it on into the ecosystem platform.
Unknown Speaker 32:09
Sure. So I think Scott, your point is that a customer rarely buys what a provider thinks it’s selling. Yep. That that’s, that’s the main kind of disconnect. And so how do we bring those worlds together? Well, with IDC we have with over 300,000, it buyer surveys that they do a year, we have a really good sense of what we’ll call the customer value drivers. What are the things that they care about? And to visualize them think about those being Lego blocks. So here’s all the things that that customer cares about, in our value Lego repository, which is what ecosystem has as a platform so a buyer can come in and say listen, I care about Ease of Doing business, I care about my career progression. I care about some economic value in this COVID-19 world. And I have some performance hot buttons that I care about. And they can literally in the ecosystem, choose their value Legos, which ones that they want to work on. Now the power is the provider can come in and then say, Alright, here’s my capabilities that match to those Legos and let’s snap them all together, and then snapping on the provider capabilities, and experience and resources. With the customer outcomes. We create this value Lego that’s bringing this world together of what do I as the end customer care about, and how you as a provider can help either accelerate or enable that and snapping those on together to create that value. Lego allows us to now have a unification or an alignment on that value to then go execute. And then in the platform, let’s just say Not snap the Lego blocks together. But let’s snap them on agree to be held accountable to them. And then ongoing Let’s measure the value delivered. So that there’s no convenient value amnesia, like at the point of a renewal. I don’t want to hear I forgot everything, I just want a better price. We can go back into the ecosystem and say, Here are our value deposits. Here’s the value we’ve delivered together as a partnership. And that’s why it’s healthy and to grow going forward.
Scott Santucci 34:29
Parent back what you said, what’s interesting chat is you use a lot of the same vocabulary I use. And I know that if I’m talking to people who have what I like to call a cute Productitis, which is a condition of seeing the world only through your product and through the silo with which you’re responsible for everything that you said, My their reaction is going to be that sounds so complicated, what the heck you’re talking about. But yet, if I’m in the Business of actually providing building economic, economically valuable relationships with other businesses. Everything that you said, sounds so simple. How do we bridge the gap between if I’ve got such a cute Productitis? That sounds so complicated. You’re making it complicated. We need to make things simple. How do we bridge the gap between those two perspectives?
Unknown Speaker 35:23
Yeah, and let’s, let’s also be very empathetic to the seller because their condition of Productitis has been just encouraged. Yeah, with things called ready product marketing, and product sales plays or anything,
Scott Santucci 35:41
is in general sales readiness and ready.
Unknown Speaker 35:44
Right, right. Right, and training on version six to one. Let’s go out and talk to the customer about version six to that one. So you got to talk about their migration plan. And so this is something that is They’re, they’re nurtured in, in their own company’s environment. So how do you break that, that structure? Well, you come back to simple truths, every seller I’ve ever met and had the pleasure to work with an honor to work with because it’s it’s a fantastic profession really believes in this concept of selling is not helping, helping and selling the real, the real strong ones and so they want to help. Well, you can’t help by leading with a product. You can only help by leading with empathy and understanding on how your customer thinks about their business, and what they need, what they need to do to be successful. And you want to have better quality conversations that start with putting the product leaving it in the car, open up the window, let it breathe, go out and talk to your customer about their business. What they’re actually trying to achieve and align into it, reverse the discussion, because two things will happen. One is, you’ll find that you’re going to start to talk to higher levels in the organization, the more comfortable you can talk around business impact in performance. And two, you’re going to find the quality of these conversations, and your relevancy to them become greater as well.
So it becomes a very rewarding environment for you to come in with that orientation of their outcomes, as opposed to your offering. And then you do need some assistance. That’s where we feel like the platform comes in, where you don’t have to understand all the value Legos, but you can put four or five out there and have a conversation about which ones should be snapped on and which ones shouldn’t. And you have a conversation where you’re co creating value with the customer. Yeah, I think that’s the biggest thing we could do as an industry is worry about the preposition of phrases we use, we talked about giving value to a customer, I think he’s strike out the word to its co creating value with a customer. And in that with implicit in that small, simple little word is a whole different way of having a conversation, which great, which ultimately gives you greater relevancy and impact to your customer ongoing.
Scott Santucci 38:23
So there’s a lot there that just really resonates with me, I will tell you, number one is the whole idea of CO creation changes so much inside an organization. So let’s think about what Chad’s talking about and the ramifications inside your company for our listeners. So you’re probably have people who are responsible who have professional services responsibilities, or you might have people who are looking at their individual product around the the training capabilities, and you might have three or four different product combinations. But when you’re actually having a conversation, About co creating value. Does Charles angles really care about which button is the best button or which paper to use and in the receipt box? Or does he care about how all this is going to help his business? And when you’re having a conversation about co creating value, and I love Chad the concept of of Legos, you basically are snapping together a bunch of different things to where you’re tailoring. It’s not bespoke. That’s one of the things that a lot of b2b companies think about when they talk about co create value. They get really worried that you’re talking about custom solutions. But you’re not talking about that at all. You’re talking about taking the elements that we’ve got and combining together and devalue. That’s what I heard from from what you said, Is that fair,
Unknown Speaker 39:46
it is fair and just you know, to take that analogy further. a mathematician one time looked at six Lego blocks have over 900 and 15 million different permutations. Just six Legos. Yeah. So you don’t have to be bespoke, you can have these building blocks and snap them together. But look at it. From the listener standpoint, the very conversation we’re having right now is co creating value. We’re coming into this podcast with our own experience, and perspective and insight. And we’re building off of each other’s ideas and coming to a different outcome from it. Yep, that’s co creating value exactly in in a very real sense. So that’s what we’re looking for from this. And sometimes you’ll have sellers go, Well, you know, I don’t know if I can have these conversations, or I don’t feel comfortable. It starts first with the mindset, which is you have to recognize that a customer can’t get their outcome without help. There’s no outcome that is done singular. For in silo, it requires great providers to come. With experience and capabilities and resources, and snap into whatever initiative, that customer is going forward to so feel confident in your, in your discussions, that there is a critical dependency on getting that outcome, which you can fill. Now, it’s just the mapping and the alignment and the snapping on that needs to occur.
Scott Santucci 41:23
Right. So, Jason, that’s a question here for you. And piggyback on what what Chad saying, but I’m curious. And maybe this is just me, maybe it’s because, you know, I have a lot of empathy for the type of business that you’re in having been a research director at Forrester, how in the world did you and jack get connected? And what do you guys bringing to market and how are you doing it? You’re a research company in China and that platform, platform business, how do these two How do you mix these two ingredients? How do you co create value for different people when People expect to buy one thing from IDC and people expect to buy one thing from ecosystems. Isn’t your chocolate and peanut butter? Aren’t we selling the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup? Aren’t we selling something different together?
Unknown Speaker 42:14
Well, in five words, we listened to Charles Engels, right?
Unknown Speaker 42:20
This was, and Chad can speak to this as well as I think this was, you know, goes back, Chad, at least a year, where, you know, we’ve been doing what we do a lot of work with a lot of vendors, tech vendors in in around the world. But one in particular, said, Hey, you know, I’ve got a great relationship here with IBC you guys are providing me with all kinds of, you know, industry based fact based value Lego blocks, right? And I’ve got somebody who I think you should meet and talk to because, you know, they’re providing us the whole platform that we snap all these Lego blocks that you guys have at DC been given to me, right? You guys should talk about this. And fast forward a year, year and a half. And here we are
Unknown Speaker 43:13
210 What’s your
Unknown Speaker 43:13
side of that story? very consistent. I you always know something’s healthy when it’s designed from the customer. This wasn’t a lab experiment between IDC and eco to say, What if this really came from the customer saying, as as Jason so nicely put it that? Listen, I want simplicity. I’m getting Lego value blocks from IDC. And I’ve got a collaborative platform around value for my sales organization. We need to bring those worlds together because our sellers don’t want to have to go to seven systems to go find the right content to have a really good conversation. They can’t go through an archaeological Dig on our intranet site to be able to have a productive conversation with an executive, they want to go to one place embedded into the CRM to go have value based conversations that have all the richness of IDC research. And, frankly, the credibility, lots of sellers need that IDC logo and validation, it’s almost the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval on a value claim. And they want to bring that in as a Lego block, and then have the customization occur through the collaboration to make it real for that customer. and not have to go through six systems to do so. and not have to spend back office time trying to figure all that out and be able to have that conversation and the continuity of that conversation over time. So I think Jason framed it well, which is it happened from a progressive joint client, seeing this as a need in their organization and bringing us together to create the partnership.
Scott Santucci 45:04
I love that that’s exciting. And some of the things that that Chad mentioned is about the dock connecting. And if you have a chance or if, if you missed it or attended it, you might recall we did a webinar on routes devalue, enabling customers to buy. And in that webinar, and of course, you can download it and re listen to it. We walk through a technique to first model model your customers map map all of the different content or maybe, as Chad would call it, identify your Legos, and then match create a mechanism to connect those dots. And as simple as that sounds, simple is definitely very, very hard so you can hear more about what those things are. But really what I’m hearing is that this is the synthesis of completely different ways and I’m going to challenge our listeners to give us ideas As of how you would talk about this, and I think that’s great practice, because it helps you practice how you would combine your own ingredients together in a new valuable ways for your company.
So we’re going to do some closing remarks in the spirit of what Chad mentioned about co creating value. What’s one thing that you took away from this, and I’ll get us started to get it to not put our guests on the spot. Here’s one thing that really stood out to me. The concept of how much information we need to organize and make empathetic for our buyers is massive. And that if we’re able to do that, we can make that whole buying experience way simpler, and I don’t mean a little bit simpler. I mean, orders, I guess to your guys’s word, radical simplicity. For me, the thing that I’m taking away from this about more work that we need to do is how do we make the Have an experience concrete, because inside b2b companies, everybody wants to be really concrete and show me what the deliverables are, but what’s actually the deliverable of an experience? So this is where my, my reactions of of our of our conversation, Jason, how about you? What are some summary your quick reactions and what you got out of our conversation here
Unknown Speaker 47:24
is what my big takeaway is this whole concept of working together to co create value is you know, getting on a platform like this bringing in all of our different perspectives now, Chad and I have you know, have had our, all of our one on one discussions about the value of our partnership between IDC and ecosystems, but then bringing in this this, you know, perspective that that you and Brian bring around. Okay, well, let’s let’s throw some dirt in the gears here. Right And, and point some things out and create some analogous analysis, if you will, right around what this really means what it could mean. So to me that whole, the whole concept of bringing in multiple points of view, and creating additional value gets me excited about doing having more of these types of discussions.
Scott Santucci 48:23
Awesome. Well, we’re definitely gonna ask you more per se back for sure. How about
Unknown Speaker 48:28
you, Chad? I love what you guys are talking about around the Orchestrator concept of sales enablement, because I do believe that that is so critical to this co creation of value that we’ve discussed and Orchestrator is connecting the dots and helping build upon thinking to get to a better outcome. So I think the Orchestration has been a good, strong learning for me, and then obviously this Productitis that that is plaguing our our thinking. The fact that we’ve named it, Scott to your benefits that we’re talking about it that we’re challenging that perspective, I think is critical. Because if I think about Jason’s point about co creating, you know, there’s that old expression, no man steps into the same river twice, for it’s not the same river, and he’s not the same man. Everything is changing every day. So no seller co creates the same value twice. Yeah. And so you have, you have to be in an environment that can handle the pace of change. We like to think of that as an ecosystem, the platform, and then has the content from IDC, to accommodate the buyers perspective, which is what we have to design around their experience their value, you bring those two worlds together, a living, breathing environment, and world class content, and you’re going to help good people do really good work and be more successful in the profession of sales.
Scott Santucci 49:56
Awesome. So as a segue to our wrap up, here’s the mental image that I’ve got So we have this disease Productitis. And in order to treat it, it’s it’s acute. It could be definitely. It could be fatal to some companies, if they have it have it too much. And we have, we can definitely back that up. But the way that I see it is it’s such a complex disease that we need a lot of specialists working together. So I have this mental image of on Dr. Santucci, we’ve got Dr. Dr. Quinn and Dr. conliffe. How do we start sharing our notes, sharing our perspectives here. So we’re just not treating the area of our special speciality, but we’re actually making the whole patient better. So if that’s a metaphor that resonates with you guys, I’d like to find more ways that we can do more of these calls to help make the value come more clear. To put you guys on the spot, would you be willing to do more podcasts like this for us in our listeners?
Unknown Speaker 50:56
Scott Santucci 51:00
Well, I like Jason’s enthusiasm more than yours, Chad.
Unknown Speaker 51:06
Sure, with a broad smile.
Scott Santucci 51:08
Well, we can see that on a on a podcast. Okay, now with that word, so we’ve talked about Orchestrator. So, Chad, you really set us up here, Brian is, as you know, and our listeners know, we’ve taken a real leadership role on our on our podcast to really carve out what an orchestrator means. And one of the things that we’ve developed are some criteria. So Brian, why don’t you highlight some of the takeaways for our orchestrators to be how they cannot process what we shared?
Brian Lambert 51:41
Yeah, absolutely. And appreciate it. And I think the first takeaway is, you know, Dr. Santucci, Cohen Dr. Quinn out about his lack of enthusiasm.
Scott Santucci 51:51
He’s like super enthusiastic.
Brian Lambert 51:56
Also, just be up front. You know, we used to A lot of analogies on this. And this is an interesting one. Because when you talk about value and having to bring it to life or make it concrete, you have to tell these stories, right? So this is probably the most agile analogies we’ve used in one podcast. But there’s a reason for that. And that’s to your to Chad’s point that simple, simple as hard. And it’s a nice borrowing from Scott on that sales is simple, simple as hard. And one of the key things that you guys talked about in the beginning was sometimes people don’t even have the language. And it can be intimidating. So just having this conversation, hopefully remove some of the mystery, and also recognize it for what it is, which I love the whole ice analogy tying back to that we’re going to transit transition state. So with that said, I you use the criteria of an orchestrator. And I just want to share what I heard first, this idea of being stuck in the ice. You know, Jason, you said that at the beginning that Sales and Marketing need to make some movement here. And that that movement comes from having empathy for buyers that that aligns to the Orchestrator attribute of unlocking energy, and creating momentum. If you’re stuck in the ice, you’ve got to create the energy to unlock that energy and create momentum.
The second thing is from Chad, what you said about working between the two functions to ensure that market awareness comes together in one integrated view. You know, that’s that’s about catalyzing change is somebody that called out on earlier podcasts, that idea of working together came to you guys talked about it here, co creating together when a company is not set up to do that. That’s a lot of collaboration and change, which is another pillar of our orchestration, attributes. The third thing is is content for helping create a conversation. It’s not the about the end all be all. It’s not it is shifting from beginning of the funnel in front of the funnel to the to the middle of the funnel, I would say and that means Understanding what the purpose is of the content, focus on the mission and goals would be the Orchestrator attribute there to move from marketing to using it in actual sales conversations. What’s the purpose of an ROI calculator? For example? What’s its goal? The last two that I have is guiding the narrative by confronting reality. That’s, that’s a lot of what we did here. And if you go back and listen, which I highly encourage you to do, this idea of delivering value added experiences to customers, when people don’t know even know what an experience is, but they can they know it when they see it. And also, that from the beginning of the show we talked about and Chad brought up values always subjective, it’s relative. If you’re stuck in the ice being value, what’s the value there versus if you’re under boiling condition, what’s value there, for example, and the last piece is outside in versus inside out. You got to drive results by design, not effort. And I think what you’ve got here on this podcast is the ultimate You know, mixing together here, maybe we’re moving from Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup to some sort of chocolate cake. But, you know, what we’re talking about here is driving results is a platform view of it with ecosystems and then from an IDC perspective, it’s the content. But you know, our podcast is designed to create a, an oven for this conversation even happen, right? So we can bake the cake and does that and it’s been designed to do that. So recognizing what it is listen to the podcast with that lens to say, Okay, this is a bit difficult, but how do we move forward and co create together?
So those are the six attributes of Orchestration, being an Orchestrator and how those came to life for me today on the podcast. I hope it brings this idea of Orchestrator to life I want to try to make it concrete you guys have me thinking about Okay. Thanks so much. You guys chat, Jason. And we’re going to take you up on your offer and willing enthusiasm there to do another podcast. We’re gonna get that scheduled and on behalf of Scott, insider nation, for joining, as always send us your comments and your feedback and let’s engage in this value conversation and figure it out together. We’ll see you next time.
Okay. Thanks for joining us. To Become an insider and amplify your journey. Make sure you’ve subscribed to our show. If you have an idea for what Scott and Brian can cover in a future podcast or have a story to share, please email them at engage at inside sp.com. You can also connect with them online by going to inside se.com following them on Twitter or sending them a LinkedIn request.